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Dave Grosswald

Bio Music Is The Only Thing That Doesn't Hurt When It Hits You! Music Historian. Vinyl collector since 1973.

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On this day in 1980, Paul McCartney was busted in Japan. On his 1st visit to Japan since the Beatles tour of 1966, McCartney was jailed for 9 days in Tokyo for possession of almost a 1/2 pound of weed. The police found the weed upon his arrival at the Narita Airport in Japan. McCartney said in 2004, “This stuff was too good to flush down the toilet, so I thought I’d take it with me.” He was also forced to cancel the tour when a virus landed him in a Tokyo hospital as well. Even though he said the weed was for his own personal use, he was facing a possible 7 year prison sentence for drug smuggling. McCartney had been denied a visa to enter Japan from several drug busts over the years, and knew of Japan’s zero tolerance to drugs. After 9 days, the Japanese government released him and deported him with no charges filed. When he got back home, he made the decision to break up Wings. On January 15, 1984, almost 4 years to the day later, Paul and Linda were again arrested for possession of weed while on vacation in Barbados. They were both fined $100 and released. “Tug of War” is the 3rd solo studio album from Paul McCartney, released in April of 1982. It was McCartney's 1st album released after the break up of Wings in April of 1981, after his drug bust in Japan. Overall it was his 11th album since the break up of the Beatles. It was also McCartney's 1st album after the murder of John Lennon. Some critics called it a return to form for McCartney. The morning of Dec 9 McCartney woke up to that John Lennon, had been shot and killed the night before in NYC. He abandoned the day's session and would start again once they were ready. In February of 1981, 2 months after Lennon's death, he resumed the sessions, recording that month with Stevie Wonder, Stanley Clarke, Carl Perkins and Ringo Starr.

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Happy 57th birthday to Paul Webb, born on this day in 1962. He’s best known as the bassist for Talk Talk. He played in a reggae band called “Eskalator” before being recruited to form Talk Talk in 1981. He played bass for Talk Talk until 1988. His composition "Another Word" from the album “The Party's Over” is the only Talk Talk song not written or co-written by vocalist Mark Hollis. In the early 2000s he adopted the name "Rustin Man" and in 2002 he collaborated with Beth Gibbons of Portishead on “Out of Season.” He announced a new solo album after 17 yrs with Rustin Man, called “Drift Code.” It’ll be released in February and the lead single “Vanishing Heart” can be viewed in YouTube now. “The Colour of Spring” is the 3rd studio album from Talk Talk, released in March of 1986. I love this one, so good! A major step away from the synthesised pop of early Talk Talk, with a greater focus on guitars, pianos, and organs on such songs as "Life's What You Make It", "Living in Another World" and "Give It Up". It has a sound described by the band as much more organic than their earlier records, with the improvisation that was to dominate on their later works already apparent in the recording process.

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On this day in 1971, ZZ Top released their debut album. "ZZ Top's First Album" is the eponymous 1st studio album from ZZ Top. It was produced by manager Bill Ham. Inspired by Fleetwood Mac, ZZ Top began recording the album at Robin Hood Studios in Tyler, Texas. The only single released from the album was "(Somebody Else Been) Shakin' Your Tree" (b/w "Neighbor, Neighbor"). A big and ballsy sound from this 3 piece band on their debut. The intro to "Brown Sugar" is awesome, with a unique bluesy sound! One of my all time favs from this power trio. The entire album is great, includes "Backdoor Love Affair" which became a staple at their live shows, and is included on the live side of the "Fandango" album. On Fandango, half the tracks are selections from live shows, the rest are new songs from the studio. I love this lil ‘ol band from Texas!

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Happy 60th birthday to Sade, born on this day in 1959. Born as Helen Folasade Adu, and known professionally as Sade Adu or simply Sade. Her middle name, Folasade, means "honour confers a crown.” She is a Nigerian British singer/songwriter, composer, arranger and record producer. In May of 1983, she performed her 1st US show at the Danceteria nightclub in NYC, (been there several times, was a cool club.) In October that same year, Sade Adu signed with Epic Records, while the rest of the band signed in 1984. Sade released her debut album Diamond Life on July 16, 1984. The album sold over 6 million copies, becoming one of the top selling debut recordings of the 1980s, and the best selling debut ever by a British female vocalist. “Promise” is the 2nd studio album from Sade, released in the US on November 15, 1985. The album's title comes from a letter from her father where he refers to the "promise of hope" to recover from cancer. The album released 3 singles, "The Sweetest Taboo," "Is It a Crime" and “Never as Good as the First Time.”

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Released in September of 1976. “All the World's a Stage” is the 1st live LP and a double live album from Rush. This was my 1st Rush album that I ever purchased 43 years ago this year! A great live album. The album was recorded in Toronto on June 11, 12, and 13 during their 2112 tour. The title of the album alludes to William Shakespeare's play “As You Like It,” which would again be referenced by Rush in their 1981 song "Limelight.” According to the album’s liner notes, this 1st ever Rush live album marks the end of the "first chapter of Rush,” and would begin a trend of Rush releasing a live album after every 4 studio albums. This lasted until 2003, when the band released a live album and DVD of each subsequent studio album's tour. I’m in awe at the quality of this LP which I bought in 1976. It’s pristine and sounds great.

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Happy birthday to Dr Martin Luther King, born on this day in 1929. In The Name of Love! "The Unforgettable Fire" is the 4th studio album by U2, released on October 1, 1984. The band wanted to pursue a new musical direction following the preceding album, 1983’s, "War." As a result, they employed Brian Eno and Daniel Lanois to produce and assist in their experimentation with a more ambient and abstract sound. The album's title is a reference to "The Unforgettable Fire,” an art exhibit about the atomic bombing of Hiroshima. The 2 songs, "Pride (In the Name of Love)" and "MLK" are lyrical tributes to Martin Luther King Jr. The melody and the chords to "Pride (In the Name of Love)" originally came out of a 1983 War Tour sound check in Hawaii. The song was originally intended to be about Ronald Reagan's pride in America's military power, but Bono was influenced by Stephen B. Oates's book about Martin Luther King, Jr. titled “Let The Trumpet Sound: A Life of Martin Luther King, Jr.” and a biography of Malcolm X, to ponder the different sides of the civil rights campaigns, the violent and the non-violent. Bono would revise the lyrics to pay tribute to King. "Pride (In the Name of Love)" was released as the album's lead single in September of 1984, and it was at that point the band's biggest hit. This is an excellent album. "Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that." ~MLK.

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Happy 67th birthday to Boris Blank, born on this day in 1952. He’s best known from his work in the band "Yello." Yello is a Swiss electronic duo band consisting of Dieter Meier and Boris Blank. Blank considers himself as a constructor of music, starting composing with manipulation of self-recorded samples and finishing the tracks with the participation of invited professional musicians. The band is best known for their 1985 single "Oh Yeah" which featured in the films Ferris Bueller's Day Off, The Secret of My Success, American Pie Presents: The Book of Love, K-9, and as the theme song for the character Duffman on The Simpsons. “One Second” is Yello's 5th studio album. Released in January of 1987, the album is noteworthy for featuring both Billy MacKenzie and Shirley Bassey, the latter singing vocals on "The Rhythm Divine.” The songs "Call It Love,” "Si Senor The Hairy Grill,” "Moon On Ice,” and "Hawaiian Chance" were used on episodes of Miami Vice. "Oh Yeah" is an addition to the US version of the album, the track is originally on the previous album, Stella. A slick production of sonic bliss!

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On this day in 1998 Junior Wells died at the age of 66. Junior Wells began to have severe health problems, including cancer and a heart attack, in 1997, and died the following year. Junior Wells was a legendary Chicago blues singer, harmonica player. He worked with Muddy Waters, Van Morrison, Carlos Santana, Bonnie Raitt, toured with The Rolling Stones in 1970. He was one of the pioneers of the amplified blues harp-style associated with Chicago. Wells is best known for his signature song "Messin' with the Kid" and his album “Hoodoo Man Blues,” one of the best blues LPs I have in my collection. “Hoodoo Man Blues” was his debut LP and it was released in Fall of 1965. This album is an early collaboration with Grammy Award-winning artist Buddy Guy. Wells told the following story, printed on the cover of Hoodoo Man Blues: "I went to this pawnshop downtown and the man had a harmonica prices at $2.00. I got a job on a soda truck... played hookey from school ... worked all week and on Saturday the man gave me a dollar and a half. A dollar and a half! For a whole week of work. I went to the pawnshop and the man said the price was two dollars. I told him I had to have that harp. He walked away from the counter – left the harp there. So I laid my dollar-and-a-half on the counter and picked up the harp. When my trial came up, the judge asked me why I did it. I told him I had to have that harp. The judge asked me to play it and when I did he gave the man the 50 cents and hollered 'Case dismissed!'"

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Happy 68th birthday to Martha Davis, born on this day in 1951. She is best known as the lead vocalist for the "Motels." The Motels were a band from Berkeley, California known for the singles "Only the Lonely" and "Suddenly Last Summer.” The first incarnation of the band was formed in 1971. The 2nd incarnation of the band was reformed in 1978, with Martha Davis and lead guitarist Jeff Jourard (formerly of the Mudcrutch pre-fame version of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers.) They had decided to reform The Motels with auditions resulting in a new line up of the band being, consisting of Jourard's brother Marty, who played both the saxophone and keyboards, Michael Goodroe on bass, and Brian Glascock on drums. Martha Davis reformed a version of the band called "The Motels featuring Martha Davis" in 1998 and toured under that name with various line ups of musicians. In 2013, the band was rebranded with a permanent name, "Martha Davis and The Motels." That band is touring the world with a line up of musicians that have been playing with Davis for over 10 years, longer than the original Motels. “All Four One” is the 3rd album from the Motels, released in April of 1982. It features the Top 10 hit "Only the Lonely", and the follow up hit "Take The L.” Both songs were on heavy rotation with MTV. marthadavis

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On this day in 1994, Harry Nilsson died from heart failure as the age of 52. Harry Nilsson III, usually credited as Nilsson, was a legendary singer/songwriter who achieved the peak of his commercial success in the early 1970s. His work is characterized by pioneering vocal overdub experiments, returns to the Great American Songbook, and fusions of Caribbean sounds. A tenor with a three and a half octave range, Nilsson was one of the few major pop-rock recording artists of his era to achieve significant commercial success without ever performing major public concerts or undertaking regular tours. During a 1968 press conference, the Beatles were asked what their favorite American group was and answered "Nilsson". The endorsement boosted his profile, and he soon formed close friendships with John Lennon and Ringo Starr. In the 1970s, Nilsson and Lennon were members of the Hollywood Vampires drinking club, embroiling themselves in a number of widely publicized, alcohol fueled incidents. “Nilsson Schmilsson” is the 7th album from Harry Nilsson, released in November of 1971. It was his most commercially successful work, producing 3 of his best known songs. Among them are the hit "Without You,” written by Pete Ham and Tom Evans from Badfinger. My favorite Nilsson tune, "Jump into the Fire" is on this LP as is "Coconut," both written by Nilsson, and became hits. Some great artists in the band, including, Chris Spedding, Bobby Keys, Jim Keltner and Gary Wright among others. ire"? That opening baseline is awesome!

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Released on this day in 1971. "Hooker 'n Heat" a double album released by John Lee Hooker and "Canned Heat.” It was the last Canned Heat studio album to feature harmonica player, and guitarist Alan Wilson, who died in Sept 1970 from a drug overdose. The photo on the album cover was taken after Wilson's death, but his picture can be seen in a frame on the wall behind John Lee Hooker. It was the 1st of Hooker's albums to chart. This was the band's 7th album, and caught them near their commercial peak. Their constant lineup changes made maintaining a consistent sound more difficult than it should have been. John Lee Hooker had been recording since 1948, and he'd scored an early hit with his single "Boogie Chillen'," but none of his full length albums had charted nationally, and due to a series of bad deals, he was deprived of songwriting credit on a number of his classic compositions. He wasn't exactly living in obscurity, but he wasn't benefiting monetarily from the wave of blues influenced rock that was currently in vogue, either. That is,...not until “Hooker 'n Heat.” Hooker received top billing on the album, and he was given the 1st of the double LP set's discs for a run of solo performances. For most of Hooker 'n Heat's first 10 tracks, the only sounds you hear are Hooker's voice, guitar and stomp; it isn't until the album's 13th track, "Whiskey and Wimmen," that a drum set makes its 1st appearance. During the recording sessions, co-founder Alan "Blind Owl" Wilson who had been battling depression for years, was spending his nights at a psychiatric facility while the album was being tracked; although band members hoped the experience of recording alongside Hooker might help revitalize their friend, he died before the record was released, succumbing to what was determined to be accidental acute barbiturate intoxication in Sept of 1970.

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On this day in 1992, bass guitarist Dee Murray died after suffering a stroke at the age of 45. He is best known as the bass player for Elton John's band. He 1st appeared with Elton John on the album "Tumbleweed Connection" as well as big hit albums, "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road" and "Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy." Murray and drummer Nigel Olsson were also members of the "Spencer Davis Group" in 1969 and during the 80s Murray continued working as a session musician. While they were Elton John's constant touring bandmates, his record company initially only allowed them to play on just 1 track per studio album. This changed with the album "Honky Château" when Elton John, now a rising star, pushed his label to allow Murray and Olsson to become full time recording members of his band,along with fellow new recruit Davey Johnstone. After recording "Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy," Dee Murray and Nigel Olsson were released from the band because Elton wanted to achieve a different sound. He said at the time "The band always rattled along. I want it to chug.” "Honky Château" was released on May 19, 1972. It was titled after the 18th century French chateau where it was recorded, Château d'Hérouville. Two singles were released from "Honky Chateau," "Rocket Man" and "Honky Cat." This album was the beginning of Elton John's transition from a singer/songwriter to a more rock 'n' roll style.

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Happy birthday to Ronnie Van Zant, born on this day in 1948. He would have ben 71 years old today. He was the lead vocalist, primary lyricist, and a founding member of "Lynyrd Skynyrd." He is the older brother of 2 other rock vocalists: current Lynyrd Skynyrd lead vocalist Johnny Van Zant, and Donnie Van Zant, the founder and vocalist of 38 Special. Born and raised in Jacksonville, Florida, where Skynyrd was formed. He considered a career in boxing, and while playing American Legion baseball dreamed of Minor League success. Van Zant formed a band called "My Backyard" late in summer of 1964 with friends and schoolmates Allen Collins (guitar), Gary Rossington (guitar), Larry Junstrom (bass), and Bob Burns (drums). The foursome went through several names before deciding on "Lynyrd Skynyrd," a tribute to a gym teacher they had had at High School, Leonard Skinner, who hated of male students with long hair. On Oct 20, 1977, a plane carrying the band between shows ran out of gas outside Gillsburg, Mississippi. The band were told to brace for a crash and Van Zant died on impact from massive head injuries suffered after the aircraft struck a tree. Bandmates Steve Gaines and Cassie Gaines, along with assistant road manager Dean Kilpatrick, the pilot and co-pilot, were also killed. The rest of the band was seriously injured. Van Zant was only 29 years old. I caught their show at the Hollywood Sportotorium on Oct 15, 1977, just 5 days prior to the crash. “Skynyrd's First and...Last,” released in September of 1978. It was the original name of the posthumous compilation album. The original 1978 version of the album is now out of print. This album was originally planned to be their debut album before getting shelved, making (Pronounced 'Lĕh-'nérd 'Skin-'nérd) their actual debut. The album contains early recordings from 1971 and 1972. It is considered an essential album by most fans of the band.

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Happy birthday to Allen Toussaint, born on this day in 1938. He was a musician, songwriter, arranger and record producer, and was a major influential figure in the New Orleans R&B scene from the 1950s to the end of the century, described as "one of popular music's great backroom figures." He was a producer for 100s of recordings, among the best known are "Right Place, Wrong Time", by his longtime friend Dr. John and "Lady Marmalade", by Labelle. Released in August of 1978, “Motion.” The record label moved Allen Toussaint from Reprise to Warner, and had him record his 3rd album in Hollywood with producer Jerry Wexler. He was backed by a bunch of L.A. studio pros, including Larry Carlton and Jeff Porcaro, and the difference from his previous records is very easy to hear. The LP is slick, and heavier on ballads. Some great tunes here; including the funky "Night People," "Viva la Money," and "The Optimism Blues.” A solid effort. He was a great artist.

 image by Dave Grosswald (@grizz51) with caption : "Released in January of 1981. “Evangeline” is an album by Emmylou Harris that was composed mostly of leftover material fr" - 1956960618833669945
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Released in January of 1981. “Evangeline” is an album by Emmylou Harris that was composed mostly of leftover material from past recording sessions. Songs on this album include a remake of "Mister Sandman" (from the Trio sessions, with Dolly Parton and Linda Ronstadt), "Evangeline" (also featuring vocals by Dolly Parton and Linda Ronstadt), which she had previously performed with The Band. Also, Rodney Crowell's "Ashes By Now", and a great cover of John Fogerty's "Bad Moon Rising". Waylon Jennings guests in a duet with Harris on the song “Spanish Johnny.” The song “Evangeline” closes out side one and it’s awesome. The three ladies harmonize beautifully. Side two has a great cover of Little Feat’s “Oh Atlanta,” featuring Bill Payne.

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Happy 37th birthday to Caleb Followill, born on this day in 1982. Caleb is the lead singer and rhythm guitarist of the Kings of Leon. The band formed in Nashville, Tennessee, in 1999. Kings of Leon is composed of brothers and a cousin. “Only by the Night” is the 4th studio album by the Kings of Leon, released worldwide on September 19, 2008. The album produced 2 high charting singles; "Sex on Fire" and "Use Somebody.” This is a great album! I forgot how good it is until I just played it again.

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I couldn’t wait for some related history to post this. Thanks to @skoalbandit609 for turning me on to this album. It’s excellent and I just received it today. It’s still in it’s original shrink wrap and in mint condition! This has been under my radar forever and I can’t believe I never knew about it. Outstanding!! “Kapt. Kopter and the (Fabulous) Twirly Birds,” from Randy California, was released in 1972. This album was recorded and released after Randy California left Spirit. Spirit's 4th LP, “Twelve Dreams of Dr. Sardonicus,” reached the charts but took a very long time to receive attention (the album would eventually be certified gold by the RIAA in 1976). As a result, Jay Ferguson and Mark Andes departed Spirit to form “Jo Jo Gunne.” Randy then spent a lot of his time in jam sessions with various musicians in Topanga Canyon clubs. Some of the musicians that appeared in these jam sessions, along with Noel Redding (under the pseudonym 'Clit McTorius'), Leslie Sampson (the drummer from Noel's band “Road,” under the pseudonym 'Henry Manchovitz') and Ed Cassidy (as 'Cass Strange'), would end up working with Randy when he started recording solo material in 1972. “Lay. Kopter” features many covers of artists such at the Beatles and James Brown, with less emphasis upon original material by Randy. The album was also heavily influenced by the death of Jimi Hendrix in 1970, who had been friends with Randy since they played together in “Jimmy James and the Blue Flames.”

 image by Dave Grosswald (@grizz51) with caption : "Released on this day in 1980, “Permanent Waves, by Rush. This is their 7th studio album, “Permanent Waves, produced 2sin" - 1956925789878576257
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Released on this day in 1980, “Permanent Waves, by Rush. This is their 7th studio album, “Permanent Waves, produced 2singles, "The Spirit of Radio" and "Freewill" and helped to make it their 1st album reach the Top 5 on the US Albums chart. The album represents a new direction for the band, with songs becoming denser and more radio friendly, setting the stage for the upcoming release “Moving Pictures.”